Schoolgirl, 9, is shot and killed after gunman ‘bursts into house’: Police launch manhunt after attack that left two other people in hospital

  • The young girl was shot in the chest in the Knotty Ash area of the city
  • She was rushed to hospital in a critical condition but later died, said police
  • A man and a woman also suffered gunshot wounds and were taken to hospital
  • Police are hunting for the gunman,  who they called ‘a cowardly individual’

A nine-year-old girl has been shot and killed by a gunman and two other people injured after a shooting in a house in Liverpool.

The schoolgirl, who has not been identified, was shot in the chest in a house in Knotty Ash, just before 10pm on Monday.

She was rushed to a hospital in a critical condition but later died, a spokesman for Merseyside Police said this morning as detectives launched a murder inquiry.

A man and a woman also suffered gunshot wounds – to the body and hand respectively – and are also in hospital.

Police, including officers with sniffer dogs, are hunting for the gunman and have cordoned off a large area.

It came less than 24 hours after council worker Ashley Dale, 28, was shot dead in the back garden of her home by a gang ‘in a case of mistaken identity’ just over a mile-and-a-half away. Merseyside police have not linked the two killings.

The Liverpool Echo reported the gunman burst into the house and fired several shots.

The force said house-to-house, CCTV and forensic enquiries are in the process of being carried out, while a cordon is also in place.

Assistant Chief Constable Jenny Sims said: “This is a truly shocking incident in which tragically a young and innocent girl has been shot and sadly died.

A nine-year-old girl has been fatally shot in Liverpool and two other people are in hospital with gunshot injuries (Peter Byrne/PA)

“Our thoughts and condolences go to her family and friends at this very difficult time. No parent should ever have to suffer the loss of a child in these dreadful circumstances.

“This crime is abhorrent and our communities must come forward and tell us who is responsible.

“This cowardly individual does not deserve to be walking the streets and I would urge those who know anything to speak to us and tell us what they know so that we can put the person responsible behind bars where they belong.

“We are carrying out a number of lines of enquiry as a matter of urgency and would ask for dashcam, CCTV or mobile phone footage from anyone who lives, works or was visiting the area of Kingsheath Avenue last night.”

Ms Dale was gunned down outside the property in the Old Swan area of Liverpool shortly after midnight on Sunday. No arrests have yet been made.

Thugs are thought to have burst through the door of her £70,000 three-bedroom terraced home, where she ‘lived largely on her own’, and sprayed bullets inside.

Police were called by neighbours reporting the sound of what they thought were gunshots or fireworks, and officers found graduate Miss Dale in the back garden.

Merseyside Police believe the property was purposefully targeted, but Miss Dale was not the intended victim. She was treated at the scene but died later in hospital.

Her death was seven years after her brother Lewis was shot dead aged 16 by a gang who mistook him for a rival.

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